I looked into tightening up the model of the ravine. Some final tweaks merely to make things a little easier come the later stages. This included adding more crags (it was suggested that given the harshness of rock and the concept art we might be able to use an unsmoothed model), UV maps and some modification of the seabed.
The ravine floor could be kept smoothed. The material could have been sand that was blown over the ledges by the ocean current and settled on the floor, depositing itself unevenly down below. This could also act as rooting material for some of the plants, as sand is easier to push roots into than rock.
The lattice deformer tool was used to give the ravine floor a rise on the ends, while an accompanying lattice deformer near the surface was used to give the sense that the split was more extreme in terms of elevation nearer the centre. This will also allow the connecting part of the floor to better sync with any ground plane extension we use
Some of the geometry along the ledges was removed as it was giving some slightly odd shapes in the shader engine that did not feel natural. While also tweaking some of the vertex positions to smooth transitions between faces.
Finally some workable UV maps were created. Because of the sheer scale of the model the UV maps had ot be cut up not just to fit them on the UV square but also to ease the rendering times as it will allow us to use smaller texture maps.
Perhaps an alternative when it comes to rendering is to create two models. The seabed will be out of focus or distant so we may be able to get away with a small-ish texture map. But the ravine walls there could be two maps - high-resolution and low-resolution, each on their own separate model that we key to alternate depending on the camera distance. But this might involve more maps and more cutting up.
|Ledt-hand ravine floor|
|right-hand ravine floor|